As many of you would be aware Barclay MIS have designed and made available for our clients a number of forms one of which is a pro forma tenancy application form along with supporting documentation such as a pet application, cross reference checklist and cross-reference questionnaire.
The value of having a set questionnaire when checking references was highlighted recently when one of our clients was reported for alleged discrimination regarding questions asked of references supplied by an unsuccessful applicant.
When queried by anti discrimination re the allegation, our client was able to produce the Barclay MIS tenancy application and the supporting cross reference questionnaire used to asses the application. Further they were able to show that by the use of this form the same questions were asked to all references supplied by all applicants. They were also able to show that this was standard office procedure and that these forms were used for all applications regardless of who the applicant was.
Subsequently the investigation was dropped as the claim was found to be unsubstantiated.
By being able to produce a standard document our client saved themselves substantial time, aggravation and expense by stopping the process at the very start.
If you don't currently use standard forms such as these, this example highlights that it would be prudent and in your best interest to either develop such a forms or adopt ones that is currently in use elsewhere.
For further information regarding these forms feel free to contact me.